The cold goes on. Indeed last night felt like the coldest yet of this spell. Filling up the bird feeders it was the first time they were covered in frost.
I took a walk up our lane to my neighbours Rob and Biddy's farm and hiked through ice covered fields. After leaving the farm buildings where there were hoards of Starlings and a Nuthatch on an array of feeders I moved along a hedge line and immediately flushed a Woodcock which towered away only to land again behind the farmhouse. Continuing my route I soon flushed a Snipe as well. I was by now astonished to see that most ditches and streams were running noisily and not frozen as I expected.
Moving on I was conscious of the continous calling of Ravens and to a lesser extent Buzzards. I wondered if this was because of their need for food. Coming to another gate I flushed another Woodcock which this time dropped down into the wooded valley. I was astonished to learn recently that hoardes of foreign hunters pay to come to the UK to hunt Woodcock and Snipe. I must say I find that unnecessary particularly in such hard weather.
Reaching the highest point by a small road I looked across at the Black Mountain covered in snow and thought how cold it must be up there at over 2,000 feet.
I walked back through our village where a few Redwings picked around for food and a Marsh Tit called from a copse before I returned home glowing from the warm clothing and a the bright, sunny but cold weather.
Some good news today in the garden - a female Siskin with the Goldfinches on the niger seed feeder.